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Best practice for working on multiple computers?

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  • Best practice for working on multiple computers?

    Just changed from ACDSee 12 (standard version) to ACDSee Ultimate 2018 - what an upgrade, love the program so far.
    Have my photos on a quick NAS, and I use three computers to edit / view photos.

    With ACDSee 12 I had also the database on the NAS, shared by several computers. Not supported actually, but it worked for me.
    Now I´m leaning towards having the database locally on each computer.

    - I've started to use "embed ACDSee metadata". Is it correct that now ALL info in my database is included in the files and/or in the file structure? I can restart with a new database and simply catalogue the files to get all the information into the new database? Working on several computers, by cataloguing files I will have databases that are equal? (not quite sure precisely what is stored in the database - development settings etc?)

    - Bought the Ultimate pack, including 2 licenses for each version of ACDSee 2018. Thus I can use Ultimate on two computers and Pro on a third, but guess that Pro can´t share the same database as Ultimate => if I´m forced to using different databases anyway I would use local databases.

    - Local database on an SSD drive is much quicker than having it on the NAS (especially when using wireless network!). The speed gain probably outweights the hazzle of having to catalogue files now and then on the different computers.

    Would love to have some feedback on my thoughts.

  • #2
    I went through many of the same steps as you with the database on the NAS.
    ​I also came to the conclusion that the speed of a local database does outweigh the a single catalog (database).

    ​I have also experimented with the database on a local OneDrive location (this syncs everything to the cloud),,, then using OneDrive to handle the catalog syncing between machines. I am not convinced this is option is stable enough for my needs yet.

    ​For what it is worth the "embed ACDSee metadata" is a feature that I rely on, too.

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    • #3
      How about using a fast external USB drive?

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      • #4
        Thx for input!

        I guess a USB drive would compared to NAS eliminate the risk for simultaneuos access, but slower than multidrive NAS on gigabit ethernet and more hassle to move around the drive.

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        • #5
          My database is now local after upgrading to m.2 Samsung and man what a difference but acdsee is still crashing randomly tho which sucks

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          • #6
            Originally posted by HakanThn View Post
            I guess a USB drive would compared to NAS eliminate the risk for simultaneuos access, but slower than multidrive NAS on gigabit ethernet and more hassle to move around the drive.
            Your correct. You must not use the database on more than one computer concurrently. You should even avoid coping the db while AC is running.

            Imho best approach is to embed the metadata and re-catalogue the files on the other computers.

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            • #7
              Just thinking not tried.....

              Install Google Drive (much more reliable than one drive) and allow it to sync the database between multiple computers. The trick would be though you need to always need to terminate Google drive before loading ACDsee to avoid corruption.

              Alternative use 'freefilesync' to sync a copy to NAS and from NAS before and after each use - I am assuming here the images are all on the NAS and thus all machines have access to it? https://www.freefilesync.org/

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              • #8
                I tried freefilesync.... sort of worked... but still created a scenario (not sure how) where things got out of sync.

                ​BTW, +1 Nxibbles on those m.2 drives. Huge speed difference when running databases (better when the system connects them directly to the PCIe bus)

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                • #9
                  Here's another attempt:
                  - Keep all your image files on net resources and access them with the same paths on every machine (e.g. //server/resource/path/image.ext).
                  - Create a resource for shortcuts on your server (e.g. //server/resource/shortcuts).
                  - Replace your local AC shortcuts folder (%appdata%\ACD Systems\ACDSee\Shortcuts) with a symbolic link to the net resource.
                  - For collections or categories use the shortcuts pane. Create folders as you like but do not copy files into these folders, instead use windows shortcuts.
                  - Do not use any proprietary AC meta data (collections, categories, AC-keywords ...) instead only use iptc meta data, because iptc meta data is applied to the files immediately.

                  To update the local database on each machine use a script to
                  - Search for recently altered image files and side car files.
                  - Create windows shortcuts for every found file in a single temp folder.
                  - Run AC and browse this folder. AC will automatically read all changes of the iptc meta data and update the db.

                  [edit]
                  If you can not quit AC meta data, you may also want to re-catalogue the temp folder.

                  Last edited by Emil; 01-09-2018, 02:46 AM.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Emil View Post
                    Your correct. You must not use the database on more than one computer concurrently. You should even avoid coping the db while AC is running.

                    Imho best approach is to embed the metadata and re-catalogue the files on the other computers.
                    Embedding is ALWAYS a good idea. Recataloging every time is impractical if you have 20000 pictures unless you do it without recreating the thumbnails.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Bobbert View Post
                      Embedding is ALWAYS a good idea.
                      But no option if you catalogue write protected media. It can also blow up your backups if you have tons of TIFFs .

                      Recataloging every time is impractical if you have 20000 pictures ...
                      At this point a script that collects recently changed files (anew embedded meta data) and create windows short cuts for each found files in a single temp folder might be useful. AC then just needs to catalogue this single folder.

                      But all this isn't very handy for concurrent access. Imagine coworker A edits AC-keywords an PC 1 and coworker B creates collections an PC 2. The person embedding his meta data last will overwrite meta data embedded by the other person. It all depends on your mode of operation.

                      We have one 'master' machine that's allowed to edit AC-meta data. (Categories only, all other AC-meta data isn't used at all) All other machines edit iptc meta data only. On these machines the db from the master gets copied if needed (eg. for exporting categories). This method has been found more practical for us than the script method described above.

                      Best (but costly) option would be a multi user DAM (probably facilitating AC).

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                      • #12
                        If you have extreme IT skills there are a couple OpenSource DAMs.... not sure how well they integrate with ACD

                        Here are a couple examples (there are probably many more)
                        http://www.razuna.org/
                        https://www.resourcespace.com/


                        ​Make sure you are capable of setting up and running a server with some sort of industrial database backend before trying any of these tools. ​That, also means an extra application / file server.

                        To do a multiuser environment with shared data, you will always need shared files and rigorous record locking and record management. This is not a job for the timid. Glen has probably forgot more about this stuff than I know.

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